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Mai-Lan Tomsen Bukovec - GeekWire Cloud Summit 2019
Mai-Lan Tomsen Bukovec, vice president and general manager of Amazon Web Services’ S3 division, speaks at the 2019 GeekWire Cloud Summit. (GeekWire Photo / Kevin Lisota)

There were several themes running through the sessions of our third annual GeekWire Cloud Summit Wednesday, but one thing is clear: data is the lifeblood of the cloud, from machine-learning algorithms to managing infrastructure at scale to the connected farms of the future.

Hundreds of cloud developers, operations experts, startup founders, and venture capitalists joined us at the Meydenbauer Center in Bellevue to hear from some of the leaders that are pushing cloud computing into the next decade and learn how to take advantage of emerging cloud technologies right now.

Keep reading for key takeaways, links to coverage of the event, and photos.

Here’s what every developer at every company needs to know, according to Microsoft’s CTO

Kevin Scott - GeekWire Cloud Summit 2019
Microsoft CTO Kevin Scott speaks at the 2019 GeekWire Cloud Summit. (GeekWire Photo / Kevin Lisota)

Things got started quickly with Microsoft CTO Kevin Scott, who ran through a lot of the work that Microsoft is doing with machine learning and edge computing to better position itself to meet the demands of customers who are just now moving their operations into the cloud.

Microsoft-backed Women in Cloud accelerator program expanding to 8 new countries

Gretchen O'Hara - GeekWire Cloud Summit 2019
Microsoft’s Gretchen O’Hara, vice president of go-to-market strategy in the One Commercial Partner group, announces the expansion of its Women in Cloud startup accelerator at the 2019 GeekWire Cloud Summit. (GeekWire Photo / Kevin Lisota)

Microsoft’s Gretchen O’Hara also announced on stage that it is expanding its Women in Cloud startup accelerator to Chicago, New York, and eight new countries after funding 30 startups out of the Seattle edition of the accelerator.

Mai-Lan Tomsen Bukovec - GeekWire Cloud Summit 2019
(GeekWire Photo / Kevin Lisota)

Amazon Web Services’ Mai-Lan Tomsen Bukovec artfully described this coming “data explosion” as a transformative opportunity for cloud customers to rethink how they build and manage their applications, especially now that cloud users can scale computing and storage at different paces depending on their needs.

Is AI overhyped? Cloud startup CEOs call out proliferation of trendy technology

Left to right: Icertis CEO Samir Bodas, Integris Software CEO Kristina Bergman and ExtraHop CEO Arif Kareem chat at the GeekWire Cloud Summit. (GeekWire Photo / Kevin Lisota)

A panel of Seattle-area CEOs debated whether or not artificial intelligence is really applicable to small and medium-size companies that don’t gather data on the level of a giant like AWS, Microsoft, or Google. “I can count on maybe one hand the number of companies that have enough data to genuinely do AI,” said Kristina Bergman, CEO of Integris Software, referring to the aforementioned companies and a few others.

Tara Hernandez - GeekWire Cloud Summit 2019
Tara Hernandez, specialist in software engineering infrastructure at Google, speaks during the DevOps track at the 2019 GeekWire Cloud Summit. (GeekWire Photo / Kevin Lisota)
GeekWire Cloud Summit 2019
(GeekWire Photo / Kevin Lisota)
GeekWire Cloud Summit 2019
Oliver Sharp, co-founder and vice president of customer services, Highspot, speaks during the AI track at the 2019 GeekWire Cloud Summit. (GeekWire Photo / Kevin Lisota)

Technical tracks throughout the day centered on DevOps, artificial intelligence, Cloud Migration, and business issues. Tara Hernandez of Google helped attendees understand how to implement DevOps thinking inside a technology organization without driving everyone crazy, and Thom McCann and Gopala Gaddipati of T-Mobile outlined how the wireless carrier built its multicloud architecture in just a few years after starting its migration path.

J.R. Jasperson - GeekWire Cloud Summit 2019
J.R. Jasperson, CTO of Twilio/SendGrid, speaks during the Cloud Migration track at the 2019 GeekWire Cloud Summit. (GeekWire Photo / Kevin Lisota)
GeekWire Cloud Summit 2019
Attendees at the Meydenbauer Center in Bellevue watch the 2019 GeekWire Cloud Summit. (GeekWire Photo / Kevin Lisota)
GeekWire Cloud Summit 2019
Guillaume Wiatr of Metahelm creates real-time visualizations of topics discussed at the 2019 GeekWire Cloud Summit. (GeekWire Photo / Kevin Lisota)

We were also thrilled to have Guillaume Wiatr of Metahelm back doing his thing, visualizing the thoughts and insights that our speakers brought to the event in a series of fun and compelling images.

Guillaume Wiatr Metahelm GeekWire Cloud Summit
Here’s how Guillaume Wiatr of Metahelm visualized the venture capital panel at the 2019 GeekWire Cloud Summit. (Metahelm Image / Guillaume Wiatr)

Seattle is the ‘landlord’ of the internet, thanks to Amazon and Microsoft’s cloud prowess

(L to R): Charles Fitzgerald, Platformonics; Sudip Chakrabarti of Madrona Venture Group; Preeti Rathi of Ignition Partners; and Sheila Gulati of Tola Capital talk investing in Seattle at the 2019 GeekWire Cloud Summit. (GeekWire Photo / Kevin Lisota)

Three venture capitalists (and one iconoclast angel investor) discussed the ongoing question of how the Seattle area tech scene stacks up against the Bay Area, with Sudip Chakrabarti of Madrona Venture Group, a recent arrival to Seattle, opining that the local scene could use a few more “startup whisperers” to help fledgling companies get off the ground.

Nell Shamrell-Harrington - GeekWire Cloud Summit 2019
Nell Shamrell-Harrington, principal software development engineer at Chef, speaks during the DevOps track at the 2019 GeekWire Cloud Summit. (GeekWire Photo / Kevin Lisota)
Bindu Thota - GeekWire Cloud Summit 2019
Bindu Thota, vice president of technology at Zulily, speaks during the AI track at the 2019 GeekWire Cloud Summit. (GeekWire Photo / Kevin Lisota)
Cal Henderson - GeekWire Cloud Summit 2019
Cal Henderson, co-founder and CTO of Slack, speaks at the 2019 GeekWire Cloud Summit. (GeekWire Photo / Kevin Lisota)

Cal Henderson, co-founder and CTO of soon-to-be-public Slack, recounted the tale of how Slack evolved from a chat system designed for a video game into a workplace collaboration tool used by a healthy chunk of tech workers. Like a lot of fast-growing tech startups, Slack used the cloud to help scale its application on the back of AWS and to a lesser extent, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud, he said.

Kubernetes Panel - GeekWire Cloud Summit 2019
(L to R) The co-creators of Kubernetes: Craig McLuckie, VMware; Brendan Burns, Microsoft; and Joe Beda, VMware, talk about the past and future of the project with GeekWire Cloud & Enterprise Editor Tom Krazit at the 2019 GeekWire Cloud Summit. (GeekWire Photo / Kevin Lisota)

And we closed out the day with a birthday party: Kubernetes, the open-source container orchestration project that opens up some very interesting possibilities for cloud customers, is five years old today. Co-creators Joe Beda, Brendan Burns, and Craig McLuckie all worked together at Google to create the slimmed-down version of Google’s internal infrastructure management tools, and they shared a variety of thoughts on the future of Kubernetes, open-source software development, and the best rejected names for Kubernetes.

A big thanks to F5, which served as the 2019 GeekWire Cloud Summit title sponsor. Also, thanks to gold, silver and supporting sponsors: Vulcan, City of Bellevue, Algorithmia, OpenSquare, Wave Business, First Tech Federal Credit Union, Bellevue College, MongoDB, and Kazuhm.

We’ll see you all in a few weeks for our next event, the Playbook, scheduled for June 26th.

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